THE FATE OF FEL GARDE
The fall of the fortress FEL GARDE has long been a mystery. For miles and miles in every direction, riders appeared to have fallen in their tracks, whole towns left lifeless. No visible wound or injury was found on the dead, the men, women, or the children. There was no evidence of poisoning or an attacking enemy force. But there was one survivor.
Once the fortress was a prison for the unwanted, the unmentionables, and enemies of the state. It encircled an entire valley, the cursed ground of FALCOMB. The land there was long spoiled by long-forgotten battles and massacres, and it had become a breeding ground for evil. Those who entered the gates Fel Garde never came back the same, only whispering a single name. SOROLAND.
The warden of Fel Garde, Soroland, was a ruthless and strong-willed man, well respected amongst the guards, and feared by the prisoners for his severity. He was appointed by the judge of the local province to run and administer the Fel Garde prison.
Today the fortress is in ruins, and none dare to traverse the cursed ground it stands on. Soroland was the only survivor of Fel Garde, and refuses to explain what happened. His fellow guards had fallen in the prison revolt. The citizens of the province were all dead, and the prisoners had vanished right from their shackles. With nothing left, he went out into the world to try to piece his shattered life back together. Though he took up work with a roving band of mercenaries, Soroland never forgot what happened; he was changed forever by this event, humbled; and marked. The tattoos on his arms and legs signified an inescapable curse, marks of the massacre at Fel Garde burned into his flesh.
The warden, SOROLAND (sore-o-lund) is a strongly built man with a dark complexion, a cruel face with unusually expressive dark eyes. A mutton chop and a scar cut down his cheek lend him a distinctive appearance. Soroland is clad in a tattered royal uniform, weatherworn and frayed. His ragged tabard conceals old, rusted armor. His muscled arms run from shoulder to wrist with tattoos, which almost look like branding marks, written in a long-forgotten language. Soroland is a skilled close-combat fighter.
THE CURSE OF THE TWO FACES
At the least opportune times, Soroland is transformed into the damned judge SANGLANTE, the woman who appointed him, and who held ultimate dominion over Fel Garde and the surrounding province.
The judge, SANGLANTE (song-lawnt) is a tall, beautiful brown-haired woman in her forties, with long, flowing hair. Her red, elaborate dress is that of a noble, with ornate patterns woven into the fabric resembling trails of blood. Bands of jewels and rare metals adorn her waist and hair. A black, dimly glowing tattoo, of the same language as Sorolandís, mars her flawless skin, running from her right temple, all the way down her body, past the cut of her dress to her ankle. Sorolandís scar appears in the exact same place on her otherwise flawless skin. Her eyes have an unnatural and disturbing glint. Under her velvet robe, she carries an ornately decorated hammer.
She can use her robe and hammer to defend against attacks and to strike out with unholy justice against enemies. Sanglante has long-ranged combat skills and the ability to influence both friends and enemies in and out of battle.
Sanglante shares equally in Sorolandís curse. She is the second face; the hand that guided the blade, the one who sacrificed the lives of her subjects to keep the inmates of the Falcomb bound to the scarred land. The process endowed her with unnatural abilities. Sanglante is a soft-spoken aristocrat, kindly, but determined, and helpful in diplomatic matters. She no longer laments her curse, but is resigned to her ultimate fate. Though typically reasonable, she abjectly refuses the one act that will lift the curse; for Soroland to free all the inmates of Falcomb, the innocent and the guilty alike. It would be a nullification of the sacrifice she made, the massacre that killed so many at Fel Garde.
On command, the brusque Soroland can transform into the silver-tongued Sanglante, and vice versa. Eventually, the player will have to decide which of the two will have dominion; though it is possible, if all the correct choices are made, to free them both. This makes for some interesting conversations and social situations later in the game.
THE WARDENíS PENANCE
SHAI encounters Soroland boasting of his mercenary exploits in a tavern. When questioned, Soroland offers his services. Itís possible to embarrass him by bringing up a topic which invokes the curse and turns him into Sanglante, and itís more than likely that the player will invoke this curse accidentally before too long. Though he puts on a macho front about his battle prowess, he is deeply ashamed of his part in the curse, and fears more than anything else that he is a bad luck charm to anyone he meets.
When Shai learns the origin of those truly responsible for killing her family, she must turn to Soroland. Only Soroland knows the way in or out through the corrupted fortress of Fel Garde. Only he can free the souls of the prisoners so justice can be done upon them; though the fair Sanglante will do everything in her power to prevent this.